Drafted: Round 7, No. 223
Team: Tampa Bay Buccaneers
Salt Lake City (Utah) East/University of Utah
6-foot-1, 331 pounds
5.28 second 40 [USC Pro Day]
33-inch arm length
10 1/4-inch hands
26-inch vertical jump [USC Pro Day]
95-inch broad jump [USC Pro Day]
5.00 second 20-yard shuttle
7.83 three-cone drill
33 bench press reps [USC Pro Day]
CBS: No. 208 overall, No. 21 DT
ESPN: No. 125 overall, No. 11 DT
WalterFootball.com: No. 12 NT
Stevie Tu'ikolovatu transferred to USC as a graduate student. The 25-year old lived out of his car with his wife initially upon arriving in Los Angeles since he was a blueshirt and did not officially receive his scholarship until after the first day of fall camp. He took over the nose tackle position and became a dominant force in the trenches for the Trojans. He appeared in all 13 games, starting every game except at Arizona, and finished with 53 tackles, including a half sack.
What didn't show in his tackle numbers was his ability to command double teams and beat those at times. He was a grown man in the middle of the line and played as such. In his final collegiate game, he was recognized as the Rose Bowl Defensive Player of the Game after collecting a team-high eight tackles.
“Left Utah to earn more playing time at USC and it seemed to pay dividends. With a jarring punch that sets him up for success, he is able to get rid of blockers for quick wins and is a productive tackler once he's free.” – Lance Zierlein, NFL.com
Said about Tu'ikolovatu:
"Stevie takes up two guys a play really. It's a big difference just having a guy there that's taking up guys a play. It's just great playing behind a guy like that, especially who is experienced too. He's not just a big body in there that's taking up space. He's a guy that's active that's getting his job done at the same time as far as taking up space too. I think it's been evident that he's a huge factor to our defense." - Linebacker Michael Hutchings
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